Tips & Tricks Video: Local Defines


Use Local Defines to make editing your cost estimates a lot easier.

Using Local Defines helps make your Cost Estimates a lot easier to edit. They can also help standardize your estimating processes and make your Cost Estimates copy and paste-able. Local Defines allow you to create a variable which you can then refer to in formula throughout the Cost Estimate. They can only be referred to in the Cost Estimate in which they were created; so, they’re local in that sense.

To create a Local Define, you need to be in the Cost Estimate window where the Local Define will be used. This is done from the formula column using the ‘def’ or define function. Firstly, give your Local Define a suitable name, prefixed by an octothorpe or hash symbol, then following a comma, enter in the value of the Local Define you wish to set.

You can use the description column or add annotations following the function to enhance reviewability.

For any Local Defines you set up, you’ll notice the octothorpe or hash symbol appears here in the quantity column. This makes your Local Defines very easy to spot in the Cost Estimate.

As you type in the formula column, you’ll notice it is now on the list of available defines to be used. You can see the define value and type here, and here you’ll see whatever is entered against the Description column for that Local Define. When we apply this Local Define, and then update where the Local Define was set up, we can see the change roll through.

If you need to adjust the value of a local define, rather than modify the local define formula, you can click into the quantity field on the line that the define was created on and change the formula directly there.

You can use Local Defines to redefine any define except for an automatic define such as #QTY, or #ESTQTY, or #LQ. This is helpful in situations, for example, where you would like to make an exception to the value of a Global Define, or other existing local defines, for just one or two of your Cost Estimates.

And that’s an introduction to Local Defines.

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